Liz Olson first to announce bid for open 7B seat

Liz Olson

Liz Olson

Liz Olson, a Duluth community organizer, has announced her candidacy for the open District 7B seat in the Minnesota House of Representatives. The district covers much of western and central Duluth.

“I believe in a Minnesota that promises all of us a chance to live with dignity — A Minnesota that offers access to living wage jobs with good benefits, strong public schools, and expanded access to our democracy,” said Olson in her announcement. “I will work hard to build relationships at the State Capitol and in our community in order to champion sound policies that benefit the people of 7B and all Minnesotans,”

Olson works with Churches United in Ministry (CHUM), Generations Health Care Initiatives, and TakeAction Minnesota. According to her campaign release, she lives in West Duluth’s Denfeld neighborhood with her husband Tom, daughter Florence, and their pets — a dog named Moses and cat named Bosley. 

Former Minnesota Lt. Gov. Yvonne Prettner Solon is serving as Olson’s campaign committee chair, marking a serious endorsement as well as significant campaign chops.

“I am excited to support Liz in her campaign for the Minnesota State House of Representatives,” said Prettner Solon in the campaign statement. “Over the years I have seen and felt the positive impact that Liz has made in our community. Liz has built strong coalitions and shown that above all else, she cares about making Duluth a city where every person has a chance to succeed. I know that Liz will make an excellent State Representative.”

Current 7B State Rep. Erik Simonson (DFL-Duluth) is running for the open District 7 State Senate seat left vacant by the retirement of Sen. Roger Reinert (DFL-Duluth). Simonson faces former Duluth city councilor Sharla Gardner for the DFL endorsement in that race.

Olson will hold a campaign kickoff event at Beaners Central in Duluth on Monday, Feb. 8 from 5-7 p.m.


  1. Ms.a Olson no longer works for CHUM or for Generations. She worked for them in the past, but now works for TakeAction, the lobbying and political action group. I am unsure if she will have to resign that position because of conflict of interest or not.

    She was selected an outstanding Duluthian under 40 by the DNT last year, and stated in the article that her big ambition was to learn to make a good pie crust. Apparently her ambitions have broadened since then.

    Seriously however, she is an outstanding candidate and potential legislator, as the involvement of Yvonne Prettier-Solon suggests. With Olson in 7B and Jen Schultz in 7A, Duluth would have two of the most outstanding members of the House. The election of Olson would help compensate for the departure of the Carly Melin, another truly outstanding Northland woman legislator.

    In a lighter note, if Beth Olson follows through with her widely rumored intention to run for County Board, the Duluth DFL will have two Elizabeth Olson’s running for office in West Duluth this year. Here in Minnesota, the land of Johnson’s, Peterson’s, Hanson’s, and Olson’s I guess that should not be that surprising.

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